Upon reading articles about what makes a life of purpose and happiness, I tend to find recurring themes. People who are successful and perceived their lives as happy and meaningful were the ones who never set money, social status and fame as their life purpose. Here I have summed up the recurring characteristics I found about people who reach the end of their lives feeling that they lived a meaningful life:
1. They believe in a religion / God
2. They have close relationships with family, friends and the community
3. They have a stable marriage
4. They do what they love everyday; or better, they make it their career
5. Their daily working hours are flexible; or better they are their own boss
6. They often travel to discover new things
7. They are easy to give charity
8. They are debt-free (it is interesting to note that this point still refers to money. But being debt-free doesn’t mean being rich. It is about living within your own means. You don’t need to be rich to be happy, but you do need to be free of debts)
It is also important to discover these things when we are still young, the earlier we set out how we want our lives to be, the higher chance that we will be successful. Once we are aware of these things, we are able to escape the ‘rat-race’ of our career and be above it. You will soon discover the false things that people think is important. The fact is, what a person thinks as important in a career, might not seem important to another.
So if what you pursue is social recognition in career, you would most likely fail, because the one you are trying to impress is a just a small fraction of the worldwide population, whereas people outside your field wouldn't care much about your position in the company / government. What people care is how much you have touched their lives.
So I hope this serve as a simple guide and reminder to the youths, and I will end by attaching a poster of this beautiful manifesto on living a full life: